Burnley FC in the Community’s Premier League Works group (Turf Works) have been working with the Canal and River Trust and Desmond Family Canoe Trail on a community project on the Leeds and Liverpool Canal. The canoe trail project involves young people who will help to design the trail and organise to run a year-round programme of activities for their community.
They will also improve the environment along the trail, planting new community gardens and habitats. Groups can help with repairs or siting of objects, cutting back trees and shrubs and clearing litter.
Our group took part in these tasks over a seven-week period of work experience culminating in the build of a huge planter with a sign to be sited on the canal bank in an area chosen by them. The site is just to the left of the Straight Mile which fittingly overlooks The Royal Dyche Pub!
They built their two-metre long planter in a series of sessions, but it was so big it had to be dismantled and transported down the canal by canoe! The planter was rebuilt at the site and a sign was displayed acknowledging our group and their efforts.
The planter will be used to plant bulbs and flowers at different times of the year and further groups will build insect houses and bird and hedgehog boxes to enhance the site.
Four of our group are now on a leadership programme with the Canal and River Trust and Desmond Family Canoe Trail, working on organising events on the canal with other young people. The project resulted in a qualification for our participants – The John Muir Award.
“This project has been wonderful for our participants. It has given them a new range of skills and the experience of working together to complete a project to benefit the community. Thank you to everyone at the Desmond Family Canoe Trail and the Canal and River Trust for their help and support,” said Judith Molyneux, BFCitC’s Employability Tutor.
Greg Brookes, Desmond Family Canoe Trail’s Project Leader, said: “The young people working with us have taken the lead on planning, building and completing a project from start to finish, developing their employability skills, knowledge and environmental awareness. Seeing them develop over the project has been great!”
Our Turf Works Employability course runs three times a year and is open to 16-24-year-olds not in education, work or training. To find out more about the course please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 01282 704716.
Alternatively, you can visit: https://www.burnleyfccommunity.org/education/turf-works/.
For more information on the Canal and River Trust please visit: https://canalrivertrust.org.uk/.
For more information on the Desmond Family Canoe Trail please visit: https://canalrivertrust.org.uk/specialist-teams/youth-engagement/the-desmond-family-canoe-trail.